There is an abundance of information at area libraries and on the Internet.
The Palmerton Library has free Wi-Fi, as well as a subscription to Ancestry.com that people can use on site and Heritage Quest, which can be accessed at home for library cardholders.
“It’s a good reason to get a library card,” said Diane Danielson, the director of the library.
To use Heritage Quest at home, patrons just click on the icon on the library’s website, then put in their library card numbers and the library’s password.
The library also has books with information about local family history, and a list of local surnames is at the reception desk. The books can be found in the basement along with family histories, yearbooks dating back to the 1940s, and baptismal and marriage records donated by area churches. The books cannot be checked out, because many of them couldn’t be replaced if they were lost, she said.
One thing the library doesn’t have is microfilm. To view streams of old newspapers on microfilm, Danielson said she sends people to the second floor of the Palmerton borough building or the historical society.
Dimmick Library in Jim Thorpe also has a vast collection of historical books and papers and will assist people in their research, by appointment only though.
Lisa Snell-Kern recommends free websites:
Ancestry.com — free access to Pennsylvania residents to information placed on the website by the Pennsylvania State Archives. Must create an account via the website http://www.phmc.pa.gov/Archives/Research-Online/Pages/Ancestry-PA.aspx. The website is through the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission.
Archive.org — https://archive.org, a nonprofit library
Billion Graves — www.billiongraves.com
Castle Garden — www.castlegarden.org, predecessor to Ellis Island
Cyndi’s List — for indexes, www.cyndislist.com
Daughters of the American Revolution — http://services.dar.org/public/dar_research/search/?tab_id=0, it costs to get copies made of records, but basic searches are free.
Family Search.org — www.familysearch.org, a good source for census records and more
Ellis Island — http://libertyellisfoundation.org/passenger
Family Search — www.familysearch.org, is similar to Ancestry.com, but not subscription based
Family Tree Builder by My Heritage — https://www.myheritage.com/family-tree-builder
Family Tree Magazine — www.familytreemagazine.com, for free forms, work sheets, and genealogy tips
Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania — www.genpa.org
Historical Maps — https://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/historical/
Library of Congress — Chronicling America — http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/ and Pennsylvania Newspapers homepage — http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/newspapers/?state=Pennsylvaniaðnici...
Old Maps Online — www.oldmapsonline.org
Olive Tree Genealogy — www.olivetreegenealogy.com, passenger lists
Pennsylvania Birth & Death Certificates — http://www.phmc.pa.gov/Archives/Research-Online/Pages/Ancestry-PA.aspx. State law allows the documents to become public 50 years after the date of death and 105 years after the date of birth. Birth Records are available from 1906 to 1910; death records from 1906 to 1965.
Pennsylvania Department of Health — http://www.health.pa.gov/MyRecords/Certificates/Pages/11596.aspx#. WBdyi53D8dU
Pennsylvania Family Group Sheet Project –www.fgs-project.com/Pennsylvania/
Pennsylvania Genealogy Look Ups — http://www.genlookups.com/pa.htm, more websites and information
Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission also has private papers and manuscripts, www.phmc.pa.gov Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness — www.raogk.org, provides a plethora of information nationwide and websites.
USGenWeb for Pennsylvania genealogy — www.pagenweb.org
USGenWeb Archives Project for Pennsylvania — http://usgwarchives.net/pa/pafiles.htm
Ancestry.com — www.ancestry.com.
HeritageQuest.com — free at the Palmerton Area Library
Family Tree Maker — http://www.mackiev.com/ftm/
Legacy Family Tree — http://www.legacyfamilytree.com/
Roots Magic — https://www.rootsmagic.com/
Ancestral Quest — http://www.ancquest.com
National Archives — https://www.archives.gov/research/military/ and http://www.archives.gov/research/genealogy/index.html, provides resources for research.
Fold3 — www.fold3.com, provides military record information.
Genealogy Bank — a newspaper website, www.genealogybank.com
Newspapers.com — www.newspapers.com